This time of year is a wonderful opportunity to gather with family and friends, eat yummy goodies, and use entirely too much red and green. One well-loved activity for making holiday memories is the crafting of Christmas cookies, and if you have quartz countertops, the process couldn’t get any better.
How are Quartz Countertops Made
Despite the name, quartz counters are not made of pure natural stone. While natural quartz is the main ingredient, it is combined with strengthening additives like polyester and styrene in addition to added pigments. This makes quartz countertops highly durable, even harder than granite or marble. They are perhaps the most easily maintained countertops, and—more relevant to a night of cooking making—non-porous and resistant to heat, chemicals, and scratches.
The Perfect Spot for Making Christmas Cookies
In every Hallmark movie with a cookie-making montage—and there are many—couples casually fling flour at each other only to have one of them brush it off the other’s cheek while the music and camera focus become soft. While baking-themed romantic tension is a win for us, we can’t help but think about the cleanup that will have to follow the holiday tryst. Hopefully all the cozy inns and Connecticut-based homes have quartz countertops that can handle the fun.
Whether you are starting a holiday romance this season or just spending time with the family, there are quite a few reasons why quartz counters are perfectly suited for cooking-making fun.
Smooth as Silk
While pitted and suede-textured finishes are available, most quartz countertops are finished to provide a smooth surface. This makes rolling out cookie dough right on the countertop a perfectly acceptable thing to do.
One Tough Cookie
As we mentioned before, quartz counters are very durable. You’re not likely to have a problem with cracking, scratching, or etching with regular use. A quartz countertop can easily withstand even the most vigorous dough kneading. That being said, you can extend the life of your counter by treating it with TLC.
We do not recommend cutting directly on your countertop. While the quartz composite can take it, it can only do so a limited number of times. You can preserve your countertop’s longevity as well as your knives’ efficacy by using a cutting board as you cut through dough, nuts, or mints. For best results, consider using a cutting board even when using cookie cutters.
If you really want to preserve your countertops, be mindful of the acidity of the food and drink that comes into contact with them. While this isn’t a huge concern with gingerbread cookies, it is a relevant point when crafting lemon bars. In your holiday treat-making efforts, be aware when working with lemon or other acids.
Keeping it Cool
One seriously cool—literally—thing about quartz countertops is that they don’t conform to the temperature around them. They maintain a relatively constant temperature, so butter and frosting left on the countertop won’t melt while you’re not looking.
This means they can also double as a cooling rack. Let your Christmas cookies cool right on the countertop so they do not continue to crisp on the bottom from sitting on a hot pan. Your cookies will come to ambient temperature more quickly, allowing you to frost them without worrying about the icing melting in an unattractive mush.
Using a strategy similar to a cutting board, we recommend using heat trivets or pot holders when placing hot cookery on any surface. While a quartz countertop can take the heat, it’s better to not push the envelope. Do not put hot cookie sheets directly on the countertop if you want that countertop to last.
Making holiday treats can be a messy business, with flour, sprinkles, and frosting as the usual suspects. Because quartz counters are smooth, you can easily wipe away the evidence of forging festive foods. We recommend using a washcloth with mild soap and warm water. If the mess isn’t too extensive, a paper towel can also do the trick. For gunk that puts up more of a fight, try scraping away gently with a plastic putty knife before wiping down the counter.
One of the best features of quartz countertops is that they are significantly less porous than other countertop materials. Because it is a synthetic material, quartz doesn’t need to be regularly sealed to keep out stains. That being said, spills should be taken care of quickly for best results. It is also wise to avoid exposing your quartz counters to strong solvents and chemicals. Cleaners that are highly acidic or alkaline should be avoided.
We hope this holiday season is filled with many days of cookie making, carol singing, gift giving or whatever else fills you with joy. From all of us at Out of the Woods Custom Cabinetry, happy holidays.